It should not come as a surprise to see the eCommerce industry growing at an exponential rate. The growth was noticeable for years, but the recent pandemic spurred things, even more, when more people had to do their shopping online. They also discovered the convenience of not leaving your home and still getting the goods or services.
Of course, this growth invites more interested parties that would also like to get a share of the eCommerce pie. From individuals to well-established businesses, starting an eCommerce venture takes effort, particularly if you are entering a competitive niche.
In a similar vein, it is also necessary to identify some of the trends that are affecting the industry so that you do not miss out on an important element when developing the business.
Below, you will find 6 examples of how various technologies and marketing methods are influencing one’s approach to working in the eCommerce industry.
1. Customer Reviews
Let’s start with customer reviews. It is no secret that the available information from previous customers is one of the biggest benefits of shopping online. You are less likely to purchase the wrong item when you can read about the experience from other shoppers.
Ecommerce stores need to create a product review system and encourage shoppers to submit feedback. It is also recommended to import already available reviews if the business is based on the dropshipping model.
Tools like Opinew, which can be considered a more advanced loox alternative, as well as a better alternative to other similar tools, is a good way to hit the ground running with customer review import.
2. Machine Learning
Missing out on the benefits coming from machine learning can be detrimental to the success of an eCommerce business. Right now, more and more stores are investing in chatbots so that they can replace real humans in customer support.
A chatbot learns patterns and recognizes how to respond to a customer’s query immediately, and so long as it is working, a chatbot will be available 24/7.
Another example of machine learning is data processing. Because eCommerce businesses need to make significant decisions, they require actual numbers instead of random predictions. Collecting vast amounts of data and checking it manually is not efficient. Instead, it is better to leave the work to smart computer algorithms and see what they project.
3. Virtual Reality
Virtual reality can solve one of the biggest drawbacks of shopping online. Because you cannot visit a store in person and try a product yourself, there is potential that you could end up spending the money, receiving the product, getting disappointed by it, and dealing with returns and refunds.
To eliminate these issues, some eCommerce businesses are investing in virtual reality to see if it pays off. Customers can put on VR goggles and explore an online store in a virtual environment that is akin to a brick-and-mortar shopping experience.
4. Content Marketing
Since there is so much competition in eCommerce, investing in new marketing methods is a must to sustain a business. It is also important to note that if a method is working at one point, there are no guarantees that it will continue to be that way.
Content marketing is emerging as one of the most effective techniques right now, particularly if there is personalization and visuals involved.
Messages to customers or potential partnerships are more likely to bear fruit if they include names, specific pain points, a video message, an infographic, or a Venn diagram, just to name a few.
Blog posts, emails, and other types of content have their place, but it is better to emphasize creating visual-based content.
5. Collaborations With Influencers
Influencer marketing is another example of an eCommerce trend that makes a significant impact. The whole thing became even more prominent when some of the most popular social media platforms introduced the shopping feature directly on their websites.
People follow celebrities and influencers and get attached to them over time. Therefore, they are more likely to purchase goods or services promoted by someone they like rather than by a random ad they encounter online.
Influencers are making money for a reason, and eCommerce stores that fail to identify the benefit of such collaborations are bound to miss out on a lot of sales.
6. Advanced Customization
The freedom to decide what you want to purchase and how you want to modify it before spending money is a great advantage. Of course, this does not apply to every industry. If anything, the trend is somewhat narrow in the sense of how many businesses can offer the advanced customization feature, but it is still worth mentioning.
For example, print-on-demand businesses should let shoppers pick colors, fonts, where they want the design, what the quality and printing method should be, and so on. Limiting these options is a downside that leads to losing potential customers.